Intimate Conversation with Missy B. Salick
Missy B. Salick is a new author who has written her first novel, Claiming Jeremiah. Her fictional memoir on foster adoption is drawing a hefty buzz around the sensitive topic. The novel is small in size, but contains a powerful message. “Children in foster care need a place to call home.” Salick, a foster care advocate, wrote this book based on her personal journey of foster adopting her four-year-old son.
Before self-publishing, Claiming Jeremiah, Salick spent several years as a freelance business writer for Fortune 500 companies such as: Shearman & Sterling, KPMG, Deloitte and many more. She also had a stint with song ghost writing. Salick’s experience in the entertainment industry stems from working with entertainment companies and media including Violator, MBK, Village Voice and more. As the founder of J.J. Autumn Publishing, her publishing company is geared towards highlighting urban fiction dedicated to special causes and community awareness projects.
When Missy is not promoting foster adoption, she can be found volunteering at Junior Achievement, being a Big Sister and counseling young girls through Journal Writing or helping to save the Polar Bears with WWF.
Featured Book: Claiming Jeremiah by Missy B. Salick
On the same night that twenty four-year-old Jordyn Sims has a miscarriage, her sister-in-law Tori Sims conceives a child. Nine months later, Tori, a long term heroin addict, abandons her two-hour-old drug addicted newborn Jeremiah, in a hospital stairwell. Jordyn receives the news and pursues foster adoption.
However, Oscar, Tori’s possessive drug-addicted boyfriend, is not about to give Jeremiah up so easily. While in confrontation with Tori and Oscar, Jordyn seeks help from the Administration of Children Services (ACS), only to discover she is faced with a maze of departments, regulations, legalities and overworked social workers. Jordyn, however, remains strong and continues to push through the uphill battle, even after she discovers she’s pregnant.
With all odds against her adoption of Jeremiah, and her pregnancy at high risk from increasing stress, will Jordyn win this tough battle, or will her world crumble before her?
Book Review by Mary King
Missy really went under cover and described the nitty gritty of dealing with the foster care system in a whole. She has written an intriguing story giving you the facts from A-Z. The story became more personable once I learned she based the story off her own experience. Everything you have wanted to know about the system but afraid to ask is here. From page 1 you are introduced to the realness of the characters. There are no cut cards. You get the real, raw, emotions of two women’s journey. Jordyn tells you the story of how to foster adopt, remain focused and never give up. Then you will follow Tori on her journey of coping with the reality of her child in care and heavy drug use.
With the adoption subject it can often be portrayed as boring, however, Missy does a wonderful job at keeping you entertained with dramatic scenes throughout the book. I am recommending this book to all my family and friends. Its an eye opener!
Book Review by Toni Mar’
This novel is amazing. I was looking for a story that would tell me more about the foster care system. This book not only gave me all the resource information but also helped me understand the birth parents perspective. I always wandered who were the parents behind the children in care. Why do they end up there? Why do the parents leave them behind? This books gives you great answers to the what ifs? It also gives you true facts behind the children awaiting adoption. I can’t wait for the sequel.
BPM: What inspired you to write your first book?
I was inspired to write Claiming Jeremiah after dealing with experiences in my foster adoption. During, my journey there were limited resources that included a how-to-guide full of facts, along with a story line giving you the – who, what, why? There are a lot of different terms and avenues you will face and may not clearly understand while dealing with a foster agency. This book was important to me, to not only to share the story, but to give (potential) foster parents fundamental facts about the process.
BPM: Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
Yes. There are over 400,000 children in care today needing a place to call home. More than 60,000 are free to be adopted. While foster adoption is not for everyone – please take the time to research, find out information and if you can, open your heart and home. Also, I wanted to give readers a glimpse of the birth parents side, whose children end up in care from substance abuse parents.
BPM: Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?
The most challenging for me with writing, is finding a “designated time.” I tend to only write when I have a million other things happening. In the midst of my kids playing with their toys and screaming to the top of their lungs or while I’m out and about running errands – the urge to write will consume me and I have to stop where I am and write.
BPM: What was the hardest part of writing your book?
The hardest part of writing this book was dealing with the aftermath of a lot of emotions I had buried long ago. Claiming Jeremiah was birthed from several journals I had kept over the course of a few years. After I wrote down certain feelings in my journals they were forgotten, lost in the pages. Until I decided to write this book and the feelings resurfaced.
BPM: Did you learn anything from writing your book and what was it?
The learning experience was incredible and I learned so much that I would be here all day if I told you everything. The most important I learned was patience. For me I was very use to writing articles, interviews or other short pieces. Writing a full length book is very time consuming and tedious. Patience is the key to finishing the book and having a successful outcome.
BPM: If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?
For your first novel, I think there is always something you would want to change or would have done differently. However, unless you want it to stay saved on your hard drive, you have to get to a comfortable place and learn to “let it go”.
BPM: Can you share a little of your current work with us?
My current piece is a romantic comedy novella, Untitled, about a young woman who has been married to her high school boyfriend for the past ten years. Tired of feeling neglected and unappreciated, she moves his stuff into the basement and decides to start over by dating him.